Thanksgiving is a time when we gather together with friends and family to reflect on all we are thankful for. Whether a turkey is at the center of your table or not, it’s a special holiday that lets Americans pause and be grateful. Every table will look different this year because no two families are the same. We all come from different backgrounds and celebrate different traditions.
With that being said, each state has its own regional favorites. Here are some of each state’s most popular Thanksgiving dishes from pineapple casserole to crab cakes; some of these might surprise you:
Alabama: Pecan Pie
Pecan Pie is a southern favorite so it’s no surprise that the Heart of Dixie treasures such a classic recipe.
Alaska: Cranberry Sauce
Oh, cranberry sauce… It’s probably the Thanksgiving side that most people love to hate. Whether it’s straight from the can or made from scratch with orange and cinnamon, Alaskans seem to think the Thanksgiving table just isn’t complete without it.
Desert dwellers apparently like to break tradition and opt for a smoky, sweet ham as the main course of the meal rather than a turkey.
Arkansas: Chicken and Dumplings
I mean, are chicken and dumplings ever a bad idea?
California: Oven-Baked Salmon
There’s no denying that Californians love their seafood. Is it really a surprise then that oven-baked salmon has found a way to be featured in West Coast Thanksgiving feasts?
Colorado: Pumpkin Spice Cupcakes
Maybe it’s the mountain air that helps them think clearly, but those in Colorado know just how important dessert is on Thanksgiving Day. These Pumpkin Spice Cupcakes with Cream Cheese Frosting end the day on a sweet note.
Connecticut: Butternut Squash
While pumpkin may be the most popular of autumn squashes, Connecticut knows that Butternut Squash deserves the spotlight, too.
Delaware: Keto Brisket
People in Delaware aren’t letting the holidays throw off their diet. Keto Brisket is one of the most searched recipes for this East Coast state.
District of Columbia: Oyster Stuffing
The United States capitol recognizes its close proximity to fresh seafood like oysters. The salty mollusks add a special twist to this recipe for stuffing.
Oyster stuffing is a New England favorite that dates back to the 18th century, as oysters were predominantly found along the eastern coast of North America. Whether it is made with or without bread crumbs, this dish is definitely worth trying on #Thanksgiving! ? @FoodieCity pic.twitter.com/mLu5FMJBQW
— Dept. of Agriculture (@USDA) November 17, 2018
Florida: Pumpkin Cheesecake
The sunshine state knows that pumpkin and cream cheese pair perfectly together and loves to mix them together to make mouthwatering pumpkin cheesecake.
Georgia: Corn Muffins with Honey Butter
Okay, y’all. Is any Thanksgiving meal complete without corn muffins? Those in Georgia would emphatically answer, “No!”
Hawaii: Stone Soup
No, stone soup doesn’t have any actual stones in it, but this soup based on a popular folktale is apparently a favorite for Hawaiians on Thanksgiving Day.
Idaho: Baked Potato
Idaho has become largely associated with delicious starchy potatoes, so it comes as no surprise that a classic baked potato has found its way to the Thanksgiving table in the Gem State.
Illinois: Pumpkin Spice French Toast Casserole
When you have a full day of cooking ahead of you, you want something easy for breakfast. This Pumpkin Spice French Toast Casserole can be made the night before and then warmed in the morning.
Indiana: Corn Pudding
Hoosier’s would never miss an opportunity to eat some delicious corn! This corn pudding recipe dresses up the golden kernel and also includes cheddar and cream cheese.
Iowa: Monkey Bread
You need a good breakfast to fuel you up for the big day! Iowans love monkey bread and this recipe is so easy, it can be made in the slow cooker!
Kansas: Ham and Cheese Pinwheels
The main course is important, but so are the appetizers. Kansas tends to like these simple ham and cheese pinwheels.
Kentucky: Mashed Cauliflower with Parmesan
The Bluegrass State is loving this alternative to the classic mashed potato recipe. Who knew Mashed Cauliflower could be so delicious?
Louisiana: Shrimp-Stuffed Mirliton
This dish is made with a pear-shaped gourd that grows on vines in New Orleans. This Shrimp-Stuffed Mirliton will add a little Cajun spice to your Thanksgiving table.
Maine: Buttercup Squash Coffee Cake
Move over pumpkin, Mainers want to give Buttercup Squash a chance to shine in this coffee cake recipe.
Maryland: Crab Cakes
When isn’t crab served in Maryland? These Crab Cake Bites make the perfect Thanksgiving Day appetizer.
Massachusetts: Butternut Squash Soup
Bay Staters know that Butternut Squash Soup is a perfect way to warm up after a Thanksgiving Day football game.
Michigan can’t forget this classic recipe for dressing to perfectly pair with a juicy cut of turkey.
Minnesota: Green Bean Casserole
Whether they call it stuffing or dressing, Mississippians know that no Thanksgiving table is complete without this bread-centric dish.
Missouri: Mashed Potatoes
Gravy doesn’t only go on turkey, folks. A mashed potato crater is a perfect place to ladle some more gravy on your plate.
Montana: Oven Roasted Vegetables
Life in Montana is pretty simple so naturally, the dishes coming to the Thanksgiving table would also be simple, like these oven roasted vegetables.
Nebraska: Scalloped Corn
Of course, Cornhuskers would want to feature corn on Thanksgiving Day! This Scalloped Corn recipe has cheese and Ritz crackers and it’s hard to top that.
Nevada: Pumpkin Bread
The Silver State knows that the perfect way to end a perfect Thanksgiving day is with a cup of coffee or tea and a slice of Pumpkin Bread.
New Hampshire: Buffalo Turkey Dip
New Hampshire has some pretty creative ways to use leftover turkey: recipes like this Buffalo Turkey Dip won’t fail to disappoint.
New Jersey: Cornbread Casserole
New Jerseyans know that cornbread casserole holds a special place on the Thanksgiving table. What else goes beside turkey?
New Mexico: Biscochitos
— Kimberly Tate (@StuffedSuitcase) October 13, 2016
New York: Cheesecake
Do we really even need to explain this any further? Try this Instant Pot Cheesecake recipe for a twist on the classic dessert.
North Carolina: Collard Greens
Mmmm, smoky and salty Collard Greens remind any Southerner of good homecooked food. So naturally, it would be featured on Thanksgiving Day.
North Dakota: Apple Crisp
Apple Crisp with vanilla ice cream is hard to beat after a day full of cooking, eating and football.
Stuffing + Turkey = Perfection
Oklahoma: Pecan Pie
Oklahoma knows that you can’t really go wrong with a Pecan Pie.
Oregon: Brussels Sprouts
Pennsylvania: Cheesy Broccoli Casserole
You have to get your veggies in somehow, right? Why not cover them in cheese and make this Cheesy Broccoli Casserole.
Rhode Island: Cheesy Pull-Apart Bread
The country’s smallest state appreciates bread and cheese and honestly who can blame them? This cheesy, garlicky Pull-Apart Bread is a wonderful substitute for rolls.
South Carolina: Pineapple Casserole
Okay, guys. This one got me, but according to Food Network, South Carolinians can’t get enough of the cheesy Pineapple Casserole.
South Dakota: Pumpkin Pie
Would Thanksgiving dinner really be Thanksgiving dinner without Pumpkin Pie? People from South Dakota sure don’t think so.
Tennessee: Sausage Balls
As a Tennessee girl myself, I can wholeheartedly agree that these sausage balls are a staple at any holiday gathering.
Texas: Cornbread Dressing
Everything’s bigger in Texas, so I’m sure that the portions of this Cornbread Dressing are not disappointing.
Utah: Crescent Rolls
Crescent rolls are amazing, there’s no doubt about it. People in Utah are using them to help dress up Thanksgiving leftovers with this recipe.
Vermont: Butternut Squash
Simple recipes are welcomed on a day filled with so much cooking. Perhaps that’s why people from Vermont love this simple recipe for roasted butternut squash for Thanksgiving!
Virginia: Mac and Cheese
Washington: Sugar Cookies
This Northwestern state loves sugar cookies and thinks Thanksgiving is the perfect reason to break out the rolling pin.
West Virginia: Rosemary Cheddar Muffins
How can you make mini turkey sandwiches without rolls? West Virginia loves these Rosemary Cheddar Muffins and I must say, they sound like they are begging to paired with a juicy piece of turkey.
Wisconsin: Cranberry Salad
The land of dairy and squeaky cheese curds knows that any Thanksgiving table isn’t complete without Cranberry Salad, and this recipe is as creamy as it is tart.
Wyoming: Wild Rice Stuffing
Those in Wyoming know that stuffing is a Thanksgiving staple, but they prefer this Wild Rice Stuffing to shake things up a little bit.
Do you make any of these recipes on Thanksgiving? Are there any new ones you’d like to try? Let us know in the comments!
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